Top 10: The Best Family-friendly Hotels in England

family vacation
Photo by Solovyova/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

by Fiona Duncan, The Daily Telegraph, November 10, 2016

A guide to the best family-friendly hotels in England, featuring activities such as horse-riding, boating, children's cookery classes and tennis lessons, along with an Ofsted-registered crèche, a Cowshed spa and Jamie Oliver restaurant, in locations including Cornwall, the Lake District, Somerset, Yorkshire and London, for half-term and summer holiday fun.

Four Seasons Hotel Hampshire Winchfield

8 Telegraph expert rating

It’s hard to believe you are only an hour from London at this, Four Seasons’ only UK country hotel. Set amid 500 acres of luscious green fields, guests can watch the hotel’s horses frolick in paddocks from the sophisticated bedrooms of the 18th-century renovated manor with spoiling spa, while children can be happily entertained in the pool, at the kids’ club, cycling, playing croquet or tennis or even 'owning a pony' for a day or boating on the Basingstoke Canal. Read expert review From £275per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best hotels in Hampshire

Bedruthan Hotel & Spa Newquay, Cornwall, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

Bedruthan has been looking after families for more than 60 years (its sister hotel, the Scarlet, down the hill at Mawgan Porth, is for adults only) and strikes an excellent balance between child-friendliness and grown-up entertainment. Children are superbly catered for: from play areas, baby carriers and babysitting to an outdoor wooden ship and the Wild Café for children’s meals, plus two hours’ free childcare per day and the Z-Club for over-eights, and an activities programme at busy times. Read expert review From £89per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best family-friendly hotels in Cornwall

The Elms Worcester, Worcestershire, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

Part of the collection of Luxury Family Hotels (Fowey Hall, Woolley Grange and Moonfleet Manor also stand out), The Elms introduces a lesser known, but no less beautiful part of the country to family holidaymakers, within easy reach of the Midlands, Cotswolds, Welsh Borders and West Midlands Safari Park. Grown-ups will appreciate the beautiful Queen Anne mansion and spoiling spa, while there’s a complimentary Ofsted-registered crèche for little ones and plenty of activities for older children, who can dine en famille or earlier in the Garden Café. Read expert review From £106per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best hotels in Worcestershire

Augill Castle Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria, England

9 Telegraph expert rating

Quirky and delightful, Augill Castle is a Victorian gentleman’s folly in the lovely Eden Valley between the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales. With the trappings of a neo-Gothic castle — tower, turrets, castellations and mullions — but in miniature, it appeals equally to children as to adults, and you’d be hard pressed to find a more family-friendly castle, with a tree house, playground and tennis court in its 15-acre grounds, and inside, a 12-seater cinema, not to mention the popular children’s cookery school. Read expert review From £170per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best Lake District hotels for walkers

Chewton Glen Hotel New Forest, Hampshire, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

The original eight-bedroom house here has expanded to 58, plus a lavish spa, indoor and outdoor pools, tennis centre and nine-hole golf course. Improvements include the remodelled and enlarged restaurant, Vetiver, which stretches across five rooms, along with a wine room and conservatory. It offers flexible menus, from light dishes, oysters and caviars to splendid silver trolleys bearing meats and cheese. Bedrooms and suites, in many different styles, still display their customary attention to detail, down to the stamped postcards on each desk, but are less fussy than they were. Read expert review From £285per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best hotels in the New Forest

Babington House Somerset, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

A fine Georgian country house, with chapel, spa, kids' club, bedrooms in the house and outbuildings and a lovely Orangery for dining. Still Britain’s only truly hip country house hotel, this Somerset chill-out zone for Soho House members, local day members and one-off hotel guests emerged from major redecoration and expansion looking great. The gorgeous, rustic chic spa, Cowshed Active, is a space in which to exercise and regenerate, with indoor and outdoor pools, steam, sauna and aroma rooms and a gym. Read expert review From £220per night

The best hotels in Somerset

Stoke Park Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

If the children are too young to care that the famous golfing duel in Goldfinger, starring Sean Connery, was filmed here, they can find plenty of other advantages, from a well-equipped games room, outdoor play area, mini football pitch, dedicated times in the pool, tennis lessons and special fitness classes to children’s menus in all three restaurants. In the bedrooms, expect to find activity packs, themed bed linen and personalised cookies at bedtime. Babysitting is also available. Read expert review From £180per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best hotels in Buckinghamshire

Watergate Bay Newquay, Cornwall, England

9 Telegraph expert rating

Remodeling and redecoration has led to Watergate Bay taking its place as the pre-eminent Cornish hotel for a contemporary family seaside holiday. Set on a spectacular surfing beach, it has a great, easy-going atmosphere, cool, breezy décor and fun places to eat nearby, including Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen. Guests can also spoil themselves in the Swim Club spa, while children will be entertained with organised games, crafts and activities. There's evening entertainment, and not forgetting the hotel’s Extreme Academy for surfing and other watersports. Read expert review From £145per night

The best hotels in Cornwall

Swinton Park Ripon, Yorkshire, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

First built in the late 17th century, Swinton Park has been much altered over the years, especially when wealthy mill owner Samuel Cunliffe-Lister bought the estate in 1888, greatly enlarging it and creating its present Victorian feel. There is also, however, a beautiful Georgian drawing room. The 31 rooms are traditional in style and range from huge suites to cosy doubles. Cheapest are the four ‘Knights’ rooms, of which Ripon is the best owing to its wonderful view. There's a charming trail and quiz to be taken through the grounds for children, plus a games room, and Bird of Prey Centre. Read expert review From £140per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best hotels in Yorkshire

Brown's Hotel Mayfair, London, England

8 Telegraph expert rating

One of this hotel’s great attributes is that it feels right for many different types of people, including the well known, the unknown, the old and the young; and families are particularly welcome and well looked after. The rooms and suites, many connecting, have class and style, and there are plenty of imaginative and luxurious extra touches. Every child that stays will find new toys and books in their room, plus personalised presents, fun duvet covers, mini bathrobes and slippers, and gingerbread men with their names iced on. Read expert review From £460per nightCheck availabilityRates provided

The best family-friendly hotels in London


This article was written by Fiona Duncan from The Daily Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.